We all have expectations when meeting people for the first time. For medical sales recruiters, these expectations get in the way when candidates don’t respond the way they anticipate. Recruiters come off too strongly or give up entirely on candidates during those first few meetings because of poor connections.
However, a missed connection isn’t always a sign of an unqualified candidate. It’s often just a misunderstanding of personalities. And in recruitment, especially, there are many personality types you’re bound to run into.
To successfully recruit the best medical sales candidates, you need a heightened awareness of both your own and candidates’ personality types. To help guide you, we’ve put together a list of the major medical sales personality do’s and don’ts:
Do: Recognize your own personality strengths and weakness
You are drawn to different candidates for various reasons. Without a clear understanding of those reasons, you can’t possibly be confident in knowing you made the right recruitment decision.
The first step is always recognizing your own personality. Coming to terms with who you are makes it easier to understand various other personalities. As a result, you’ll have the power to discern if you’re not connecting with a candidate on a personal level or if they’re truly not a match for the role.
By uncovering, accounting for and correcting your unconscious biases you’ll see candidates for who they are as sales reps, not how they differ from or relate to you personally. This will blow the doors for considering more diverse talent wide open.
Don’t: Write someone off in the first five minutes
Let’s be honest: we’ve all met those people we immediately — or soon thereafter — write off. However, we have also realized, over time, we actually really like some of those people.
Recruiters don’t have the luxury of waiting for candidates to “grow on you.” If you don’t keep an open mind in the first five minutes, you won’t be fully receptive to what they have to say for the remainder of an already short, one-time interview. This results in the loss of plenty of top talent.
Be aware of the fact that some personality types have a longer warm-up period to open up. Make a conscious effort to continue investing yourself in the conversation. The more detailed questions you ask, the more opportunity you have to realize this could be the company’s next top sales pro.
Do: Be immediately direct about the role
Introverts, extroverts — and every personality in between — want to know the details about the job from the start. Every bit of information you provide helps them grasp the intricate parts of the role to determine if it’s a right fit for them.
Take the average number of customers a rep is expected to see in a week, for example. If the company’s approach is aggressive, meaning their sales team gets minimal alone time between sales calls, those with INTP (Introverted, iNtuitive, Thinking, Perceiving) personalities will run into trouble down the road.
They need quality alone time to recharge. So, that seemingly small detail actually makes a huge impact on whether or not they’ll feel confident and comfortable in the role. However, when divulging these specifics to someone with an ENTJ (Extraverted, iNtuitive, Thinking, Judging) personality, you may see a spark ignite inside them. Their personality feeds off of time spent with others and they require very little time to themselves to operate at full capacity.
Remember, it’s important to discuss all aspects of the job — positive and negative. The more you hold yourself to this, the more you’ll see high-quality, fitting medical sales reps filter into the next stages of the recruitment process.
Don’t: Dismiss introverts
There’s a common misconception in sales that all top reps have outgoing personality types. In fact, many recruiters gauge for this during their first interactions.
However, if you take a closer look at the desirable traits of top sales reps, you’ll see they’re often more similar to the traits of introverts. For example, introverted sales reps care deeply about customers and their business outcomes, they’re always looking for a solution to customers’ problems, and are considered caring listeners. The truth is, the most successful medical sales reps are able to find balance between these tendencies regardless of their innate personality.
When candidates aren’t immediately energetic or talkative, give them time. Allow them to prove whether they have the traits that will take them to the top of the sales board.
Do: Point out their specific personality traits
Medical sales reps have specific traits that will either hurt or help them excel in a role. Allowing them to discuss vague work experiences won’t get you the direct information you need. It also won’t help them understand if the company and role are what they’re looking for.
During interviews, point out things you’ve noticed about their personality. Do they seem overly direct? Did they come off a bit timid at first? Do they like to control the conversation?
Point out these traits and ask them to explain how they will help or hinder them in the medical sales field. This will lead to more meaningful and telling conversations.
How do you connect with different medical sales personalities? Let us know!